Greening the Agro-Tourism Business in Romania

Project facts

Project promoter:
Heifer Romania
Project Number:
Target groups
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME),
Initial project cost:
Final project cost:
From Norway Grants:
€ 179,554
The project is carried out in:


The wastewater management systems, using reed-bed filters developed with support from the Norwegian partner Bioforsk, will be unique to Romania. Greening waste management systems created for 60 subsistence-farming households. Best practices guides for successful replication of greening the rural tourism industry will be produced and shared. Building two practical models of waste waters management systems using biological waste water treatment through reed bed filters for rural tourism facilities and the nearby households; dissemination of the information by designing and distributing a best practices guide. Greening the households and rural tourism facilities waste management by building 50 practical models for organic compost and 10 manure management systems; dissemination of the information by designing and distributing a best practices guide.The target area chosen for this project is of high cultural and touristic value. Agro-tourism is a well-established local business and brings visitors from all around the country and even abroad.

Summary of project results

The wastewater, domestic waste and manure management systems in Romania, especially in rural areas, are characterized by insufficient protection of water resources; a very low percentage of the population being connected to sewage and waste water treatment systems; malfunctioning of the existent treatment stations; and an overall lack of compliance with waste management policies. Manure management systems are rare in Romania. Implementing such systems prevent groundwater contamination and promote efficient use of organic fertilizers. In Romania there is a lack of information, models and expertise on environment protection in general and in waste water management in particular that was introduced by the Norwegian partner, NIBIO. The long term goal was to protect environment with a main focus on water, create models, educate people, spread the best practices and change mentalities. The project signals the importance of responsibly managing waste in efficient and innovative ways. The outputs delivered by the project were: two green waste-water management systems that use reed-bed filters, which are unique in Romania; 60 subsistence farming households improved their waste-management in a green way. Ten of them, who owned livestock, put in place modern manure platforms, and 50 families created environment friendly composting biodegradable garbage systems. A number of eight trainings were organized, also three conferences were held, and international and national exchange-visits took place among the project holders. The dissemination of results through a good-practices guide was published in 1500 copies and were delivered to tourism facilities in rural areas all over Romania, to regional and National environmental agencies and other environmental focused NGO’s. The project also had a dedicated web-page ( which was updated with all relevant information and all the project studies in downloadable format. Two agro touristic facilities ceased polluting the water. According to laboratories check all legal indicator levels are now within the national approved standards. The results show the levels of the waste water at the entry point of the system being a lot higher than the acceptable standard, and at the exit point to be within the regulations. 50 beneficiary families have used the organic compost produced for their gardens thus having quality products and saving money from using chemical fertilizer. 10 farms no longer contaminate the ground water by storing the manure on the ground and use the concrete manure platforms.

Summary of bilateral results

Romanians learned from their Norwegian partners to consider the environment, to focus on green energy, to be energy efficient in using resources and how to be modest and rich in the same time. High tech environment friendly technology was imported from Norway. Norwegian project participants from NIBIO and Oppland County improved the knowledge about Eastern Europe and especially about Romania. Projects results will be promoted by the Norwegian-Romanian team, in academic and scientific world. YES. They started as partners and we are cementing our relationship trough respect and friendship. There were four Romanian partner visits in Norway and two delegations from Norway visited Romania. We celebrated the success and recognition of our project, we socialized together and we learn from each other, so each project participant became an Ambassador of the other country. They created a working group of people interested in our project. At the beginning we had many persons interested in both sides Norway and Romania. Only those who were able to add value to the project were retained and the others became only supporters. The know how of NIBIO experts together with the deep understanding of the needs and local context of the Romanians leaded us to success.